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Canadian job vacancies in third quarter of 2017 up 15% over previous year Statistics Canada finds greatest year-over-year increases in Quebec, British Columbia

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The number of job vacancies reported by Canadian employers in the third quarter of 2017 was up 15 per cent over the same quarter in 2016, Statistics Canada reports.

Canadian businesses reported 468,000 job vacancies in the third quarter of 2017, an increase of 62,000 over the third quarter of 2016. A previous report by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business said job vacancies in the third quarter of 2017 were the highest in nearly a decade.

Permanent positions accounted for 80.2 per cent of all job vacancies in the third quarter of 2017, Statistics Canada reports.

This was the fourth consecutive quarter with year-over-year increases in both the number of job vacancies in Canada and the job vacancy rate, which stood at 2.9 per cent for the third quarter of 2017.

These year-over-year increases were “broadly based across the provinces, industrial sectors and occupations,” Statistics Canada says.

Job vacancy growth highest in Quebec, British Columbia

Quebec and British Columbia were found to have had the highest year-over-year increases in the number of job vacancies and the job vacancy rate for the third quarter of 2017. They were among nine Canadian provinces that saw a third quarter increase in the number of job vacancies over the same quarter in 2016.

Businesses in Quebec reported 87,000 job vacancies in the third quarter, an increase of 21,000, or 30.6 per cent, over the same quarter in 2016. Statistics Canada says the increase was “widespread across sectors,” with manufacturing leading the way. Over this same period, employment in Quebec grew by 2.2 per cent and the province’s unemployment rate fell by one percent, from seven to six per cent.

Change in the number of job vacancies between the third quarter of 2016 and the third quarter of 2017,
by province and territory

SOURCE: Statistics Canada / CANSIM table 285-0001

In British Columbia, job vacancies were up by 16,000, or 20.2 per cent, over the third quarter of 2016. B.C.’s job vacancy rate stood at 4.2 per cent in the third quarter of 2017 — the highest in the country. Statistic Canada reports that the biggest increase in job vacancies in B.C. was in transportation and warehousing.

Alberta posted a job vacancy increase of 9,400 jobs, an increase of 21.3 per cent over the third quarter of 2016. The job sectors posting the highest increases were construction, transportation and warehousing, mining, quarrying and oil and gas extraction.

Canada’s most populous province, Ontario, had 11,000 more job vacancies over the third quarter of 2016, with the health care and social assistance and manufacturing sectors showing the greatest increase.

Newfoundland and Labrador was the only province to show a year-over-year decline in job vacancies over the third quarter of 2016, with 500 fewer vacancies.

Vacancies rise in 7 of 10 occupational categories

Compared to the third quarter of 2016, the number of job vacancies was up in seven of Statistics Canada’s 10 broad occupational categories. The categories with the greatest increases were trades, transport and equipment operators, and sales and service occupations.

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